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St. James teacher Manahan called to eternal rest

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PERRIS—Josemari “Joe” Manahan, a teacher at St. James School in Perris and a music minister known throughout the Diocese, was called to eternal rest on Aug. 31 after he died from injuries suffered in an auto accident.

 Manahan was struck from the rear while sitting in his vehicle at the intersection of Domenigoni Parkway and Sanderson Avenue in Hemet. He was 51 years old.

 His passing has had a deep emotional impact on the St. James School community, Principal Camile Lara said. Manahan had served as the school’s music teacher, junior high math teacher and eighth grade science teacher since last school year.

 “He always had a smile on his face,” said Lara. “He was just so happy to be here. We really felt that. The kids felt that.”

 Over the past two decades, Manahan has shared his musical talents with a number of parishes and schools in Southern California including St. Joseph, Upland, St. Catherine of Alexandria, Riverside and Holy Spirit in Hemet, where he and is family are parishioners. He also once taught music at St. Joseph School in Upland and was involved in the Filipino Music Ministry of the Diocese. 

 He was a graduate of the University of the Philippines with a Bachelor of Arts and was a member/soloist of the world renowned University of the Philippines Concert Chorus and toured in U.S., Europe, Canada, and Australia.

 In his spare time, Manahan enjoyed watching The Filipino Channel, playing his grand piano, watching movies with his beloved wife, and singing for the Lord. He served his life for God and passed down that virtue to his children. He touched many not just with his voice, but also with his kindness and his grace.

 He is survived by his wife Luningning B. Manahan, his children Marcus Christopher B. Manahan, Gian Carlo B. Manahan, Kirsten Marie B. Manahan, and Joseph Benjamin B. Manahan, his mother Nenita Manahan, his two sisters, Cecille Manahan, Feli Marie Miras, and his three brothers, Tony Manahan, Ramon Manahan, and Jess Manahan.